3 Ways to Be a Happier Family …… {because we all are a bit broken}











to print photo 1 and photo 2


The kids laugh loud and the floors shake a bit with the stars and the laundry sprawls across the mudroom floor.

I pick up pencils and socks and all these pieces that keep breaking off us and a broken world.

And I remember how to smile, how the shoulders feel in the chuckle and the shake and the parts all falling into place.

I put things back.

God never stops whispering: Give thanks anyways — do this in re-membrance of Me. I can feel how He puts me back together.

Why in the world give thanks? Why in the name of heaven?

God say to give thanks, to do this in remembrance of Him — because in the remembering to give thanks, it’s our broken places that are re-membered — and we are the ones made whole.

In recollecting all the goodnesses of God — all the brokenness in us re-collects. We are put back together. We are re-membered. We heal.

In giving thanks to Him in the assembly  — it’s our very souls that re-assemble.

A joyful heart is good medicine and our broken bones can be re-memembered when we remember to thank a good God.  

At the kitchen sink, crumbs across a counter stacked with pots that need scrubbing, I scratch down another gift —

In this mess… I am blessed.

And they laugh and I live and the ink runs across the page —-  all theses fracture lines in my heart healing in this fusion to God.


3 Reasons Why to Teach Kids to Be Grateful
The research can only support Scriptural Truth:

1. Better Attitudes:

Children who practice grateful thinking have more positive attitudes toward school and their families (Froh, Sefick, Emmons, 2008).

2. Better Grades:

Gratitude in children: 6-7th graders who kept a gratitude journal for only three weeks, had an increased grade point average over the course of a year.

3. Better Caring:

Children who kept gratitude journals were more sensitive to situations where they themselves can be helpful, altruistic, generous, compassionate, and were less destructive and displayed less negative social behaviors…

And if We Don’t Practice Gratitude?

On the other hand, research shows that youth who are ungrateful are “less satisfied with their lives and are more apt to be aggressive and engage in risk-taking behaviors, such as early or frequent promiscuous activities, substance use, poor eating habits, physical inactivity, and poor academic performance.”

Why does gratitude do all of this — how can it, really? 

Because we were made to live in gratitude to God, giving glory to God.

All research from: Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier 


3 Ways for Family Members to be Re-membered, Happy & Together

1. Print out the the Daily Joy Dare:

Print out each month’s calendar of daily Joy Dares  and put it on the fridge. In the morning, share that day’s dare of 3 gifts to look for throughout the day and dare the kids to go on a God Hunt that day and keep their eyes open to find those three gifts.

2. Print out a copy of the free booklet 7 Gifts: Good and Perfect:

Have family members tuck the booklet into a pocket or a bag or lunchbox when they head out the door. Encourage each member of the family, them when they see a blessing, find gifts for that day’s joy dare, are struck by the goodness and glory of God, to jot it down in their 7 gifts booklet. Establish a daily ritual of remembering the goodnesses of God!

 3. Assemble together as a family to give thanks and be Re-Assembled

After your evening meal, or family devotions, or as you tuck children into bed, sing the chorus of “Count Your Blessings, name them one-by-one.”

Sing the chorus together — and after the chorus, call out the name of a family member, who then gives thanks for a blessing or two or three or all 7 gifts they found that day…  Then sing the chorus again and call out another person’s name for them to share their thanksgiving to God. Continue until each family member has remembered their blessings — and you as a family are re-membered and made whole in thanksgiving to the Giver of gifts and goodness and grace upon grace upon grace….

Print out your own 7 Gifts: Good & Perfect booklet This is a fallen world — As a family, give thanks and be Re-membered!

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Related: 15 Ways to Raise Grateful Kids


giving thanks here and being re-membered… the endless One Thousand Gifts:

brothers & sisters & memories made here

Count your blessings with the Gaithers …

singing praises early

my dad in church with us this Sunday

grace upon grace

Gloria Gaither’s article here picking One Thousand Gifts as her Book Club pick in Homecoming magazine

tears and prayers and laughter under a spruce tree with a word-sister

boy-made peach cobbler

{#7 on the New York Times  : that God keeps doing this thing only of and for Himself, to urge His people to give thanks and find wholeness in remembering His endless goodnesses}

communion in a country church on Sunday morning, remembering a Savior’s sacrificing love, giving thanks and being re-membered in Him alone

…. thanks be to God

Click here to print May’s Joy Dare:
  and begin this week — this month — right!

Count three gifts a day, 1000 gifts in 2012 (and be entered to win the NikonD90 camera?) Thank-you is a word that can change you, your world — the whole world!


Each day of May, either share your gifts on on Twitter {label with #1000gifts #JoyDare so we can find you!}, or with us in the gratitude community at Facebook , or on Pinterest (#1000gifts).

Each day, 3 people will who share their gifts via Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest will be randomly selected & entered into a drawing for JOY BASKET: a gift card @ Amazon {100$} & {signed copies of One Thousand Giftsthe photographic gift book, the DayBrightner, and the family gratitude journal} Give thanks to Him in the assembly!

Join us? And happily change everything by keeping your own crazy list of One Thousand Gifts?

Please, jump in, make your life about giving thanks to God! — Just add the direct URL to your specific 1000 gift list post… and if you join us, we humbly ask that you please help us find each other in our refrain of thanks by sharing the community’s graphic within your post.

Give thanks to the Lord! His Love Endures Forever!

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